The Hidden Manna and the White Stone in Revelation 2:17 -- By: Daniel K. K. Wong
BSac 155:618 (Apr 98) p. 346
The Hidden Manna and the White Stone
in Revelation 2:17
Daniel K. K. Wong is President and Professor of Biblical Studies, Truth Theological Seminary, Alhambra, California.
The third of the seven letters to the churches of Asia (present-day western Turkey) in Revelation 2–3 was addressed to Pergamum (Rev. 2:12–17). The believers at Pergamum had been faithful in holding fast the Lord’s name, and as a result some of them had been martyred (v. 13). Yet some in the local church held to “the teaching of Balaam” and were guilty of immorality (vv. 14–15). They were exhorted to repent, lest the Lord come and make war against them with the sword of His mouth (v. 16).1
BSac 155:618 (Apr 98) p. 347
This letter concludes with the enigmatic statement, “To him who overcomes, to him I will give some of the hidden manna, and I will give him a white stone, and a new name written on the stone which no one knows but he who receives it” (v. 17). What is the hidden manna? What is the significance of the white stone? What is the name on the stone? To whom are these blessings promised? These questions are addressed in this article.
The Hidden Manna
The Background of the Blessing
The reference to manna is traceable to the Book of Exodus. In the wilderness, as Moses led the Israelites from Egypt to Canaan, God provided bread (manna) for their sustenance, and Moses placed a memorial pot of this manna in the ark of the covenant (Exod. 16:32–35; Heb. 9:4).2 Jesus spoke of Himself as the manna or spiritual “bread” God gave from heaven (John 6:35, 48–51). Those who appropriate this “bread” will experience spiritual satisfaction and sustenance. Spiritually they will never hunger or thirst (v. 35) or die (v. 50).
The Nature of the Blessing
Some writers suggest “the hidden manna” is a figure depicting admission to the messianic feast, the Messiah’s kingdom.3 Benedict claims it represents “the capacity to
You must have a subscription and be logged in to read the entire article.
Click here to subscribe